The treatment of sexually abused children

E. Deblinger, A. H. Heflin, M. Clark

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


A model of cognitive-behavioral treatment for sexually abused children is presented. A brief review describes the definition, prevalence, and effects of child sexual abuse as well as the treatment outcome literature in this field. A treatment model is presented that includes the following therapeutic components: gradually encouraging the child to think and talk about the abuse; helping child and parent cope with emotions surrounding the abuse; helping parents better manage their child's behavior; and education regarding child sexual abuse, healthy sexuality, and personal safety skills. A case example is presented involving a 10-year-old girl who was sexually abused by a paternal uncle. The case depicts how the child's symptoms of posttraumatic stress, depression, and anxiety were successfully treated through individual sessions with the child and her mother as well as joint sessions that allowed the mother to serve as a therapeutic resource and support for her child.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)69-88
Number of pages20
JournalIn Session - Psychotherapy in Practice
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1997

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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